It’s officially that time of year again… when motivation is at an all-time low and no matter how much sleep I get, I can’t seem to break the habit of hitting snooze fifteen plus times in the morning. I honestly feel like that Hibernol SNL skit where Chris Farley drinks the cold and flu medication and then sleeps for the entire winter (minus the beard). The combination of freezing temps and lack of Vitamin D equates to avoiding the gym for days on end, flaking out on planned dinner dates and way too much Netflix and chillin’. In an effort to combat these cold-weather blues and kick-start your inner motivation, I’ve worked with our editorial team to compile a list of books and podcasts that are sure to get your juices flowin’. So, if you too are sick of scrolling Netflix for new shows every night, swap the TV time for some much needed me time and get inspired by this awesome list of motivational media we’ve compiled.
Happier with Gretchen Rubin: Consistently earning a spot on the Apple Podcast Top Charts, Happier with Gretchen Rubin covers meaningful conversations between bestselling author Gretchen Rubin and her cohost, younger sister Elizabeth Craft. The siblings discuss happiness, good habits, and human nature. Gretchen and Elizabeth offer practical advice on topics like being a better listener, dealing with life’s road bumps, or most recently, the importance of wearing clothes every day. Spoiler alert: yoga pants and an old hoodie don’t cut it!
How I Built This with Guy Raz: Show host Guy Raz sits down with some of today’s more successful and renowned innovators, entrepreneurs and idealists to discuss their journey to the top. Listen as icons recount stories on the inception of their business, difficulties they faced and hard-truths on what it takes to turn dreams into reality. A few of my favorite episodes include Barre3 with Sadie Lincoln, Patagonia with Yvon Chouinard, and Bumble with Whitney Wolfe.
The Minimalists: Co-hosts Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus reached a point in their lives where they realized they weren’t happy with what had become the center of their universe: stuff. Together, they made the decision to live with less and master the “art of letting go.” The Minimalists offers a glimpse into their new perspective and what it means to live a more meaningful minimal life. If podcasts aren’t your thing, watch an 18-minute TED talk given by the two in 2016. And if you maybe aren’t quite ready to give up Netflix, their documentary “Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things” is available there, too.
Good Life Project: Every week, Jonathan Fields talks with entrepreneurs, artists, parents, and students, about pursuing a sustainable life that is purposeful, powerful and progressive. The conversations cover topics from living a more vulnerable life with Brene Brown to mastering the business world from Nike’s previous Head of Marketing, Liz Dolan.
Your Best Year Ever: Already finding yourself slipping trying to stick to your New Year’s resolution? Me too. New York Times best-selling author Michael Hyatt shares his 5-step-plan on how to reach your full potential and design your best year ever. Throughout the course of the book, readers are prompted to discover what’s holding them back, how to overcome past and current setbacks, the seven attributes of effective goal setting, and much more.
The Universe Has Your Back: New York Times best-selling author Gabrielle Bernstein tells compelling stories coupled with life-changing lessons on letting go of the need to control and turning your fear into faith. Berstein hopes the novel will awaken readers to their connection to faith and joy and guide them to what she believes is our true purpose: to be love and spread love. She says, “These words can no longer be cute buzz phrases that we merely post on social media. Rather, these words must be our mission. The happiness, safety, and security we long for lies in our commitment to love.”
The Coaching Habit Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever: Founder of Box of Crayons, a Toronto-based training company, Michael Bungay Stanier shares seven essential questions that effectively guide others through difficult challenges. Learn how you can decrease the amount of work you put in while increasing the amount of impact that comes out. Bungay Stainer discusses the notion that managers are more inclined to give advice and dispense answers rather than empower subordinates because they feel it will be easier and faster. Although it is compact in size (just 242, 8-inch pages) and can be read in a couple of hours, the book is packed with substance every leader can learn from.
Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life from Dear Sugar: Written by the author of the bestselling book Wild, Cheryl Strayed, Tiny Beautiful Things is a collection of undeniably relatable letters Strayed received while serving as the once-anonymous voice behind the advice column “Dear Sugar.” The in-depth essays from lost, lonely and heartbroken writers paired with Strayed’s thoughtful insights on overcoming life’s inevitable ups and downs. Strayed embraces these hardships and unpleasant heartaches and encourages readers to rise above it all and to love truthfully, despite all of life’s difficulties.
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Our monthly reading edits are compiled by Stefani Ellenbecker, W&D’s Editorial Director, and the editorial team. Every month we all get together to talk about the content going on W&D for the upcoming weeks, which is most often inspired by articles, timely topics, and cultural touch points outside the lifestyle category. We hope that we enjoy these links and get as much out of them as we do!
BY Stefani Hodzic - February 19, 2018
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Thank you for being here. For being open to enjoying life’s simple pleasures and looking inward to understand yourself, your neighbors, and your fellow humans! I’m looking forward to chatting with you.
I’m not really a podcast person, but I love reading books! Thank you for the recommendations. I’ve heard so much about Your Best Year Ever, sounds like I really DO have to get my hands on a copy! 🙂
Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
Thanks Charmaine for reading!
Thank you for the recommendations! I’ve listened to How I Built This and it amazes me how those featured built their businesses.
I know, it amazes me too. Thank you for reading!
Thank you, I love these posts. It feels like catching up with good girl friends and going over all the things we’ve been into lately. I just finished the book Sing, Unburied, Sing and could not have loved it more. It was beautifully written.
Mikell, I will have to look that book up! Thanks for reading!
i find that positive affirmations work really well this time of year!! if you think its going to be depressing etc….but when you wake up and think “this is going to be a great day! i’ll get so much done!” it really helps!
Krystal, I agree!!
The Coaching Habit is such a great book even if you are not a coach (I’m not) but want to have better conversations, ask better questions and generally interact well with others. There is so much people want to say, and when the conversation opens instead of tightens, you get to hear more of it. Great list. I might have to try a podcast while I fold laundry. 🙂
Amy, I totally agree, thank you for reading!
this post made me feel so much better about my mood in february (and admittedly still now!). i’m hoping warmer temps come soon but i’ll have to check out some of these recommendations in the interim. i listened to “you are a badass” recently and it gave me a nice boost!